I had corned beef sandwiches for breakfast yesterday, and whilst pondering that corned beef is the chipboard of cooked meats, i worked into Oman on 17m. That was followed up by working the ARRL club station in Connecticut, W1AW. I could hear Isreal as if they were next door, but as always they were only calling stateside. Whats with this obsession with the Isrealis and Europeans for wanting to work the states? I can get the states most days on 17m, im much more interested in Africa and Asia, and the Pacific, or South America. Theres, someone told me, 600,000 hams in the US, so its hardly going to be rare to find one on whatever band.
All in all a good couple of days on the radio, not gone flat out, but worked some interesting calls. However, im now, inevitably i suppose, on the trail of RFI! I first noted that 7MHz wipes out my ADSL router, but thats not surprising as its totally unsheilded, cheap BT rubbish. But these past few evenings ive noticed that my neighbours new PIR halogen lamp, is triggered on by my operating on 20m. If i keep to 10W its fine, but 100W and it lights up. So i made a note to myself to operate low power on 20m in the evenings. When i mentioned this to my neighbour, Mick, he told me that their touch controlled bedroom lights also react, seemingly dependent of frequency, and flicker with my signal. Oh Dear! He told me he wasnt bothered, and that it was actually a bit amusing, but that really isnt the point, its RFI and i need to sort it.
I have been intending recutting the doublet down to 88ft anyway, so i have bumped that up in my priority list. Im going to keep the feedpoint in the same position, which will mean extending the lanyard cord at the house end by some 7ft. Hopefully that increased seperation will negate the RFI problem. Im also, with Micks help, going to carry out a suite of on-air tests, on all the bands i use and at all power levels, to see which cause problems. If nothing else it will give me a guide of frequencies or powers to avoid when the interference would be likely to be troublesome. Theres no evidence of TVI, so a LPF wont help here, it looks to be direct pickup.
Oh, and the receive longwire has come down again. This time snapped at the mast end. I really must put a proper insulator on it this time...